ON PIRATE SPORTS
From the Anchor Desk
Tuesday, April 8, 2008
By Brian Bailey
Holtz looking for a few
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It’s our first real taste
of football since that glorious week in Hawaii. It’s also our last
morsel of the pigskin until we make that trip to Charlotte at the end of
It’s the spring football game
at East Carolina, as always the feature attraction for the Pirate Pigskin
As it should be, football is a
celebration at East Carolina. I always look forward to the spring game, and
this year is certainly no exception!
The Pirates conducted their
second scrimmage of the preseason this past Friday. Coach Skip Holtz was
pleased with many aspects of his team’s play, but he does have a concern
with his seniors.
“We need our young players to
fill holes,” said Holtz. “That’s happening. But we need our seniors to
assume leadership roles. We aren’t as far along on that.”
Holtz says he’s seen it
before. A team returns a bunch of starters, but doesn’t come close to the
expectations that were laid out.
“That’s the evolvement that it
takes,” Holtz said. “I’ve seen teams before that returned 18 starters and
went from winning the conference to winning 3 or 4 games. There’s nothing
written in stone that says we’re going to a bowl game, or that we’re going
to win eight (games)."
Spring football games usually
aren’t a thing of beauty. Under Holtz, we have seen some great highlights
that stand out. Remember the Aundrae Allison flip a couple of years ago.
If there is a highlight this
time, keep an eye on number 17. Dwayne Harris continues to put on a show
each and every day at practice.
Holtz won’t look for a lot of
flash on Saturday.
“I just want to see them go
out and complete,” Holtz explained. “We’ll put them on two separate teams. I
just want to see what they do in a game like situation. That will be the
One year the teams played for
a car wash. The losers washed cars for charity, while the winners sat around
Another year the winners were
treated to lobster and steak, while the losers dined on beanie weenies. Now
Holtz realizes he has some
youngsters who have talent, but who have never played in front of a crowd.
There won’t be 40,000 on Saturday, but any crowd will make a difference.
“It’s funny. Some of the young
guys are pretty focused until you get a crowd in there. Then they start
looking around," observed Holtz.
"I’m anxious to see how they
Kemp in the zone
East Carolina’s baseball team
is back in action tonight, hosting Old Dominion.
beat the Monarchs back on March 4th,
20-13, in 10 innings. In that game, ECU rallied to tie the game in the
ninth, and then exploded for seven runs in the 10th to win the game.
ECU went 3-2 last week and
fell to 28th in the Collegiate Baseball poll. ECU is one of four Conference
USA schools represented in those rankings, behind Rice (No. 13), Houston
(No. 19) and just ahead of Southern Miss (No. 29).
Pirate catcher Corey Kemp was
honored by Conference USA as the league’s hitter of the week. Kemp has
provided great leadership at the catcher position, and his bat has been
solid all year.
Last year, Kemp seemed to take
too many pitches. I believe it took time for Kemp to adjust to Division I
pitching, and we are seeing the dividends of that adjustment this season.
Kemp hit .450 (9-20) last
week. He had multiple hit games in four of the five games last week.
Kemp is the second Pirate to be honored as the league’s top hitter for
the week. Ryan Wood was named back on March 10th.
The Pirates host ODU, and then
visit Elon before coming back home for a Conference USA series with Marshall
Now that’s a Super Saturday of
Sports! Pirate football in the afternoon and Pirate baseball in the evening
will make for a great day! Let’s just hope the weather cooperates!
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04/21/2008 07:01:37 PM